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October 30, 2012 Navratri – Power and Power Play

Navratri festival has come half way. Today and tomorrow being Saturday and Sunday all will be drenched in the festivity fully. Whether it is Garba in Gujarat or Ramlila in north India or Durga Pooja festival in Bengal, it is associated with invocation of power and power play in the real life through mythological stories of Ramayan and Durgasaptshati.

Over the years, glamour of festivity in its bright lights faded the most important aspect of the longest and biggest festival across the India. People like Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi have presented a spiritual phenomenon as a marketing event with the superficial and superfluous terms like the longest dance festival. Consequently, it undermines the essence of Navratri.

I remember my childhood days. Music was simple while people dressed in ordinary costumes. But the spirit of Navratri transcended all and turned people into groups dancing to the rhythm of the nature in a state of bliss. It is missing despite all variety and sophistication of music and dance steps. But what is more missing is the spiritual aspect of this religious festival.

Is Navratri a show of victory of good over evil through the epic of Ramayan or tales of fights with demons in Durgasaptshati? I think the message of fight between Ram and Ravan and goddess Durga and demons like Mahisashur and Shumb and Nishumb is more deep and touching lives of all of us. It is power and its use, the power play.

We all want power. Nothing moves in the world without power. Whether one is a saint or King, all are in power play in one form or another. The difference in the role of Ram and Ravan or Goddess Durga and Mahisasur is quite clear. All were powerful. One used power for the self, for the gratification of one’s ego while the other used it for others, for the welfare of others.

Today when marketing forces are dictating their terms in our lives and our society in all spheres, we need to think in the terms of others and their welfare. Otherwise we are bound to fall in the trap of this new variety of demons playing in the flood light of glamour.

Friends, Navratri is a festival of spirituality and joy. Together, children, youngsters and elders pray to Mataji for spreading of light in our lives i.e. positive values in our life and defeat of untruth & devils. We offer our prayers with joy. Let us continue to celebrate and spread the pious spirit of this festival.

Once we take this spirit of Garba and Navratri, we are bound to manifest the spirit of right power play of this festival in our life. Enjoy Garba. Be in a state of bliss in step with the rhythm of cosmic dance.

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